The Ethnology of the British Islands
by Robert Gordon Latham
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The Saxon Chronicle simply translates this. Alfred strengthens it, writing that there "the English dwelt before they came hither."—i.e., to England.

Ethelweard speaks of "Anglia vetus, sita inter Saxones et Giotos, habens oppidum capitale, quod sermone Saxonico Sleswic nuncupatur, secundum vero Danos, Hathaby."

A well-known locality in the Duchy of Sleswick supplies the commentary on these texts. A triangular block of land, about the size of the county of Middlesex, is bounded on two of its sides by the Slie and the Firth of Flensburg, and on the third by the road from that town to Sleswick.

Many writers think that the Angles should be placed here; and, thinking this, maintain that no population except that of the Angles or some closely allied tribe has a claim to be considered as the early occupants of Holstein and Sleswick. They overlook, however, the important fact that Ptolemy, who places the Angili in a locality far south of the parts in question, places, in those parts, populations which he separates from his Angili. They also overlook the still more important fact that the only populations earlier than the present of which definite traces can be discovered in either Holstein or Sleswick, are the Frisians and the Slavonians—the Frisians on the west, and the Slavonians on the east.

In another point of view this district is important, although the line of criticism upon which it has its bearing is gradually becoming obsolete. When the direct influence of the Danes and Norwegians upon the language of Britain was less recognized than it is now, it was by no means uncommon to explain such Scandinavian words as occurred by the assumption that they were Angle as opposed to Saxon, the Angle being the most Danish of all the proper German dialects—transitional, perhaps, to the Teutonic and Scandinavian divisions of the so-called Gothic stock. This was a line of criticism difficult to refute; since the advocate of the Angle origin of Danish words might fairly argue that it was not enough to shew that a word was Scandinavian. It must also be shewn to have been non-existent in the North-German dialects. This brought in the proverbial difficulty of proving a negative assertion. Hence, the district of Anglen and Beda's statement concerning it are important.

Now, at the present moment, this district of Anglen is just as Angle or English as the rest of Germany—that is, next to not at all. It is Low German, tinctured with Danish; having once been more Danish still, as is shewn by the geographical names ending in -by, -skov, and -gaard.

The only piece of truly cotemporary evidence in Beda is the statement of its being a waste when he wrote, and this is better explained by supposing it to have been a March, or Debateable Land, between the Germanic and Danish occupants of Sleswick, than by the notion that it was left empty by the exodus of its occupants to Great Britain. The deduction of the Angli from an improbably small area, on the wrong side of the Peninsula, must be looked upon as an inference under the garb of a tradition. Such I believe it to have been; freely, however, admitted that if Anglen poured forth upon England even half the Angles that England contained, it was likely enough to have been most effectually emptied.

At one time I went further than the mere denial of Anglen being the original home of the Angles in the exclusive manner that Beda so evidently considers it, and looked upon the word as a mere translation of the word Angulus—since the area in question is certainly one of the nooks and corners of the Peninsula. But the fact of there being one or two small outlying districts, retaining (I believe) certain privileges, beyond the area bounded by the Slie, the Firth of Flensburg and the road to Sleswick, in the parts about Leck and Bredsted, and on the North-Frisian frontier, has modified this view, and inclined me to the notion that the Anglen districts of Sleswick were really Angle—though Angle only in the way that Britain was Angle, i.e., from the effect of an invasion from Hanover. If so, although we fail in finding in Sleswick the mother-country of the English, we get a detail in the history of the Angles of Germany instead—this being that certain Angles, probably at the time they were reducing Britain, may have turned their faces northwards, and effected settlements in certain parts of Sleswick, having, previously, reached the Trave. Hence they achieved a small maritime conquest on the coast of the Baltic, just as they effected certain large ones on the shores of Britain. Why do I suppose this to have been by sea? Because, when true history begins, whatever the men of Anglen in Sleswick may have been, the intermediate parts of Holstein are Wagrian. The settlement, then, in Anglen, is just a detail in the naval history of the Angles, during the period of their rise and progress—that is, if it be anything Angle at all.

A notice of Procopius now finds place. An Angle princess betrothed to Radiger, prince of the Varni, is deserted by her promised husband for Theodechild, his father's widow, and avenges herself by sailing for the mouth of the Rhine with a large fleet, conquering her undervaluer, forgiving him as women are likely, and dismissing her rival, as they are sure to do in such cases. To deny "all historical foundation to this tale," writes Mr. Kemble,[22] "would perhaps be carrying scepticism to an unreasonable extent. Yet the most superficial examination proves that in all its details, at least, it is devoid of accuracy. The period during which the events described must be placed, is between the years 534 and 547; and it is very certain that the Varni were not settled at that time where Procopius has placed them; on that locality we can only look for Saxons. It is hardly necessary to say that a fleet of four hundred ships and an army of one hundred thousand Angles, led by a woman, are not data upon which we could implicitly rely in calculating either the political or military power of any English principality at the commencement of the sixth century, or that ships capable of carrying two hundred-and-fifty men each, had hardly been launched at that time from any port in England. Still I am not altogether disposed to deny the possibility of predatory expeditions from the settled parts of the island adjoining the eastern coasts."

From this criticism I only differ in thinking that, instead of Procopius having mistaken Saxons for Varni, he has mistaken the Elbe for the Rhine.

It is a point of some uncertainty, but of no great importance to ascertain whether the Angle subjects of the insulted but forgiveful princess were from Britain or from Hanover—islanders already in a state of reaction against their continental fatherland, or simply Angles of the Elbe. The accounts of Procopius respecting both countries are eminently obscure and contradictory. It is only certain that as early as the ninth century there were continental writers who attributed to the Germans of Britain movements from the Island to the Continent as far back from their own time as the fifth century. Nay, later still, there were some historians who wholly reversed the order of Anglo-Saxon migration, and deduced the true Fatherland Germans from England.

And now the history of the rise and progress of the Angles on the soil of Germany ends. Even if it can be increased there is but modicum of information. Yet we could scarcely expect more. On the contrary, why should not the Angles have shared the total obscurity of the Nuithones, Sigulones, and others? What population amongst those with which they came in contact could have recorded their alliances, their victories, or their defeats? Not the Frisians, who were unlettered as long as they were Pagan, and Pagan until the tenth century. Not the Slavonians, whose spiritual and intellectual darkness was equal. Not the Romans, for reasons already given. There only remained the Gauls and Britons. But, unfortunately, in the eyes of the Gauls and Britons, although all Angles were Saxons, all Saxons were not Angles—so that the proportion of proper Angle history which we have in the Gallic and British accounts of the Saxons cannot be determined.

The history of the Saxons of the continent has been stated to have been the history of the Old-Saxons. And up to the time of Beda, and about half a century later, such was the case. Hence, the rule is as follows—where we hear of Saxon actions by sea, the actors may be Old-Saxons, Angles, Frisians, Scandinavians, or Slavonians, and where we hear of actions on the Terra Firma of Germany, and also in the times anterior to B.C. 800, the actors are Old-Saxons rather than Anglo-Saxons. In this case, except in Britain, we have little or no Angle history under the name of Saxon; and, as there is equally little under the name of Angle, we have, as has been already seen, next to no Angle history at all—i.e., in Germany.

But with the reign of Charlemagne the criticism changes. The Saxon history, even in Germany, becomes Anglo-Saxon, as well as Old-Saxon, and it may be that the events are pretty equally distributed between the two divisions. The reason is clear. The arms of Southern and Middle Europe have penetrated to the parts beyond the Weser, and it only requires the Angles to be described under their own proper name (instead of that of Saxon) for us to have the materials of an average history. It is a sickening and revolting history, and a history that few nations but the English can afford. Throughout the whole length and breadth of Germany there is not one village, hamlet, or family which can shew definite signs of descent from the continental ancestors of the Angles of England. There is not a man, woman, or child who can say, I have pure Angle blood in my veins. In no nook or corner can dialect or sub-dialect of the most provincial form of the German speech be found which shall have a similar pedigree with the English. The Angles of the Continent are either exterminated or undistinguishably mixed up with the other Germans in proportions more or less large, and in combinations more or less heterogeneous. And the history of the Conquest and Conversion of the Saxons by Charlemagne is the history of this extinction. It is this that makes it so impossible to argue backwards from the present state of the Angles of Germany to an earlier one, and so to reconstruct their history. They have no present state. Neither have the Old-Saxons—their next of kin. Of the Frisians only, the next nearest, there are still fragments; for, although the enemy of the Old-Saxons and the Anglo-Saxons was the enemy of the Frisians also, he was not equally their exterminator. They may or may not have been braver than the Angles and Old-Saxons. They certainly occupied a more impracticable country. To this period—the period of their reduction—the Angli and Werini of Thuringia are attributed. They may, indeed, have got there as they did to Sleswick, by conquest, and at an earlier period. If so, there was an alliance. They were, however, more probably transplanted.


[22] Saxons in England, i. 24.



Of the British Isles at the time of the Angle invasion we have effected a sketch, rather than a picture; a sketch indistinct in outline, and with several of its details almost invisible. Nevertheless, it is a sketch in which some of the points are pretty clear. Germans of one or more varieties, Kelts either Gaelic or British, Picts who may be anything, Romans and Roman Legionaries are the chief elements. These we have had to distribute in Time and Space as we best could. We have also had, as we best could, to investigate their relations to each other.

Let us look back upon what has been attempted in this respect.

And first in respect to our data. The statements of the early authors, and the value which is due to them, have formed the subject of a separate chapter;[23] and it is hoped, that, without any undue disparagement, they have been shewn to be valid only when they are opposed to a very small amount of either conflicting facts or a priori improbabilities. I also lay but little stress upon them when they assert a negative, and equally little when their apparent testimony may be reduced to an inference. Their absolute testimony, however, must be taken as we find it.

Partly for the sake of recapitulation, and partly with the view to give a further investigation to certain questions which could not well be considered until certain preliminary facts had been laid before the reader, the more important inferences are put in form of the following propositions, to some of which a commentary is attached.


The British Isles were peopled from the Keltic portion of the continent originally and exclusively.

This implies an objection to the doctrine of any pre-Keltic population, and to the inferences deduced from certain real or supposed peculiarities in the shape of the skulls from the tumuli of the Stone period. (See pp. 26-27.)


The Gaels cannot be derived from the Britons, nor the Britons from the Gaels; on the contrary, each branch must have been developed from some common stock.

This rests upon the differences between the British and Gaelic languages. (See Chapter V.)


Of this common stock the British branch, at least, must have been developed on the continent. (See Chapter VI.)

This, of course, assumes that the Galli of Gaul were not derived from Britain; a view which has never been adopted, and which probably has so little to recommend it as to make its investigation superfluous.

The British language of Britain and the Gaelic of Gaul would not have been so much alike as they were had they developed themselves separately, each after their own fashion.

This last proposition depends, however, to a great extent, upon the following, viz., that—


The similarity between the ancient language of Gaul and the ancient language of Britain is measured by that between the present Welsh and the Armorican of Brittany.

The arguments of pp. 86-87, resting as they do upon the close relationship between the ancient language of Gaul[24] and the British—would be materially impaired by any thing which subtracted from the evidence in favour of that relationship.

Now the present Welsh and the present Armorican of Brittany are languages that are very nearly mutually intelligible.

And as the Armorican represents the ancient Gallic, and the Welsh the ancient British, the affinity between the two old tongues must have been, at least, equal to that between the two new ones.

But what if the Armorican do not represent the ancient Gallic, but be merely so much Welsh or Cornish transferred to Brittany in the fifth century? In such a case the argument is materially weakened.

Now there is a certain amount of statements to this very effect, viz., to the Welsh origin of the Armorican. Let them be examined.

Gildas, who mentions the rebellion of Maximus, says nothing of any British migration to Brittany.

Nennius gives us an account beset with inaccuracies, being to the effect that Maximus the seventh imperator in Britain, left the island with all the British soldiers it contained, killed Gratian King of Rome, and held rule over all Europe; that he would not dismiss the soldiers who went with him, but gave them lands in Armorica or the country over-sea (Ar-mor-); that, then and there, these soldiers of Maximus slaughtered all the males, married the females, and cut out their tongues lest the children should learn the language of their parents instead of that of their conquerors. For this reason we call them Letewicion, or, half-silent (semi-tacentes). Thus was Brittany peopled, and Britain emptied; so that strangers took possession of it.

Beda's account is equally unsatisfactory. The Britons were the first who came into the island, and they came from Armorica. It was from Armorica that they came, it was in the south of England that they landed, and it was they who gave the name to the island.

Now there is an error somewhere—if not in Beda, in Nennius; if not in Nennius, in Beda.

Traditions are uniform, inferences vary; and when Nennius brings his Armoricans from Cornwall, and Beda his Cornishmen from Armorica, we have a presumption against a tradition being the basis of their statements. The real basis was the existence of the British language on both sides of the Channel, a fact which being differently interpreted by the different writers gave us two separate and contradictory inferences—each legitimate, and each (for want of further data) wrong.

The present similarity, then, between the Welsh and Armorican remains unaffected by the statements of Beda and Nennius; and the commonsense inference as to the latter language representing the ancient Gallic takes its course.


The Belgae were Kelts of the British branch.

This implies an objection to all the arguments in favour of a Germanic population occupant of Britain anterior to the Christian era, which are based on the name Belgae. (See pp. 61-75.)


The Gaelic branch of the Keltic stock may have been developed in either the British Isles or on the continent.—(Chapter V.)

The following list of words in Professor Newman's Regal Rome, shewing that a remarkable class of words in Latin were Keltic rather than native and Gaelic rather than Welsh, and which was unpublished when the fifth chapter was written, favours the doctrine of the Gaels having been continental as well as insular to an extent for which I was previously unprepared:—


Arms arma arm. Weapon telum tailm. Helmet galea galia. Shield scutum sgiath. Arrow sagitta saighead. Coat of Mail lorica liureach. Spoils spolia spuill. Necklace monile fail-muineil. Point cuspis cusp. Spear quiris[25] coir.

It also favours Lhuyd's hypothesis rather than the Hibernian. (See pp. 88-89.)


The earliest ethnology of Scotland was that the earliest Britons, i.e., either British as opposed to Gaelic, or Gaelic which, subsequently, became as British as South Britain itself.

This means that the present Gaels were not aboriginal to the Scotch Highlands, except in the sense that they were aboriginal to Kent or Wales. (See pp. 88-89.)


The present Scotch Gaels are of Irish origin.

These two propositions go together; involving an objection to the so-called "Caledonian hypothesis" (p. 89), with which they are incompatible. Nevertheless, anything confirmatory of that hypothesis would, pro tanto, invalidate the present.

The chief facts upon which this doctrine rest are—

1st. The absence of the term sliabh, the current Gaelic form for mountain, throughout Scotland—even in the Gaelic parts of it.

2nd. The great extent to which the forms in aber are found northwards (see p. 81). These occur so far beyond the Pict area, that, although so good a writer as Mr. Kemble has allowed himself to make it commensurate with the British, and although his list of compounds of aber has been placed in the present writer's chapter on the Picts, as an illustration of a certain line of criticism, the inference that they were Britons in North-Briton other than Pict is highly probable. Hence in the northern parts, at least, the word aber was used not because the country was Pict, but because it was British.

It is well known that the doctrine is, in respect to its results, the current one; from which it differs in resting on ethnological inference, rather than on a piece of history.

The historical account is to the effect, that the Scots of Scotland were originally Irish, so that Ireland was the true and proper Scotland. It was Ireland where the Scots dwelt when the Picts came from Scythia, Ireland whence the Picts took their Scottish wives; and, finally, Ireland that gave its present Gaelic population to North Britain. Under a leader named Reuda the Scots of Ireland sailed across the Irish Sea, penetrated far into the Firth of Clyde, settled themselves to the north of the Picts, drove that nation southwards, multiplied their kind in the Highlands, and called themselves Dalriads (Dalreudini), since Reuda was the name of their chief, and daal meant part. The point where the Scots landed was just where the British and Pict areas joined, the parts about Alcluith or Dumbarton—"procedente autem tempore, Britannia post Brittones et Pictos, tertiam Scottorum nationem in Pictorum parte recepit, qui duce Reuda de Hibernia progressi vel amicitia vel ferro sibimet inter eos sedes quas hactenus habent, vindicarunt; a quo videlicet duce usque hodie dalreudini vocantur, nam eorum lingua 'daal' partem significat."—Hist. Eccl. i. 1.

To agree with Beda in making the Gaels of Scotland intrusive, but to demur to his evidence, is, apparently, to substitute a bad reason for a good one without affecting the conclusion, i.e., gratuitously. We shall soon see how far this is the case.

At present, I remark that all Scotland may have been British without having been wholly Pict; and that—

The parts of Scotland which were not Gaelic at the beginning of the Historical period and have not been so since, never were.[26]


The Picts may or may not have been the British Kelts of Scotland: this depending upon the extent to which the gloss penn fahel is a word belonging to the Pict tongue, or only a word belonging to a language spoken within the Pict territory.

Why should it not be Pict? Why disturb the inference by suggesting that they may be Pict only as man or woman are Welsh, i.e., words other than Pict, but words used in a Pict area just as English is spoken in the Welsh town of Swansea? I admit that, if we look only to the plain and straight-forward meaning of Beda, this refinement is unnecessary. There are, however, certain complications.

Daal=part, is suspiciously like the German theil, the English deal, the Anglo-Saxon dael, the Norse del, dal; indeed, it is a wonder that Beda took it for a foreign word. Hence, gloss for gloss, it is nearly as good evidence for the Picts being German or Norse as penn fahel is for their being Briton. I say nearly, because it is expressly stated to have been Scotch. But this it is not. What, then, is our next best explanation? To suppose it to have been a word used by a population other than Scotch, but on the Scotch frontier. Now this population was Pict.


The Dalriad Conquest may or may not have been real. Being real, it may or may not have given origin to the Gaelic population of Scotland.

This means that Beda's evidence, being exceptionable, may be wholly false—except so far as it is an inference from the existence of Gaels in both Ireland and the Western Highlands.

Even if true as to the fact, its ethnological importance may be over-valued, since the investigation of the origin of the Scotch Gaels inquires, not whether any Irish Scots ever appropriated any part of Scotland, but whether such an appropriation were the one which accounts for the Gaelic population of North Britain. This is the difference between a conquest and the conquest—a difference too often overlooked.

I should not like to say that the Picts were not Scandinavians, a point which will be treated more fully in the thirteenth chapter. Hence—


Scandinavian settlements may have taken place as early as the earliest notices of the Picts.

In this case the lines would be—Norway, North Scotland, the Hebrides, Ireland and Galloway.


Germanic elements existed in Britain in the reign of Diocletian.

The notices of the Franks in Kent and Middlesex suggest this. (See p. 96.)


The Littus Saxonicum must have been ravaged by Germans as early as the reign of Honorius.

This must be admitted even if we construe Saxonicum as ravaged by Saxons, rather than occupied by Saxons—a construction which is so little natural, that I doubt whether it would ever have been resorted to if the language of Gildas had not been supposed to preclude the notion of any Saxon invasion anterior to A.D. 449. We have seen, however, how little that writer was in the position to make a negative statement, i.e., to state, not only that Hengist and Horsa came over in a given year, but that none of their countrymen ever did so in a previous one.


No distinction need be drawn between the Angles and the Saxons of Great Britain on the strength of the difference of name.

This, however, by no means implies that they are to be identified. It merely means that the name goes for but little; and that the difference of origin between the different portions of the Germanic population of Britain is to be determined by the facts of each particular case.


[23] Chapter vii.

[24] Here is one out of the thousand-and-one inconveniences arising from our present philological nomenclature. I am contrasting two languages with each other: yet their names are as like as Gallic and Gaelic.

[25] Sabine—Sive quod hasta quiris priscis est dicta Sabinis.—Ovid.

[26] This contravenes an opinion to which I have elsewhere committed myself (Man and his Migrations, pp. 161-162). Acting upon the doctrine that Ireland must be considered to have been peopled from the nearest part of the nearest land of a more continental character than itself, unless reason could be shewn to the contrary, I ignored the statement of Beda altogether, and peopled Ireland from the parts about the Mull of Cantyre. The present change of opinion has arisen out of no change in the valuation of Beda's statement. The extent to which the forms in aber are found in Scotland, and the extent to which the name sliabh (with a few others) is wanting, are the real reasons.



The present chapter will examine the extent to which certain Germanic populations mentioned by Beda and other writers as having taken part in the Anglo-Saxon invasions of Great Britain actually did so; it will also inquire whether certain other populations not so mentioned may not, nevertheless, have joined in those invasions, although their share in them has been unrecorded.

The Jutes.—Did Jutes, rather than Angles or any other allied population, effect the conquest and occupancy of parts of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight as they are said to have done?

Let us suppose the case of an American archaeologist, in the absence of any authentic history, reasoning about the origin of the three populations of Plymouth, New Jersey, and Portsmouth, three populations lying within no great distance of each other. He knows that, as a general rule, they are to be deduced from England; and he studies the map of England accordingly. On the south-coast he finds a Jersey, which he reasonably infers is the Old Jersey, the mother-country of the Americans of the New. He also finds a Plymouth, from which he draws the same equally reasonable inference. Lastly, he sees a town named Portsmouth—and here he repeats his reasoning—reasoning which is eminently logical, cogent, and apparently conclusive. It passes without challenge or objection, and the origin of the three populations gradually loses its inferential character, and assumes that of a fact founded upon evidence. A writer who adopts his views, perhaps the very writer himself, more or less unconsciously, next believes that his doctrine has an historical rather than a logical basis, and it passes for a fact founded upon records, or at least on tradition. In such a case a sentence like the following might easily be written—"they" (viz., the populations of New Jersey, Plymouth, and Portsmouth) "came from three of the more powerful populations of England, i.e., those of Jersey, Plymouth, and Portsmouth. From those of Jersey came the men of New Jersey, from those of Plymouth the men of Plymouth, and from those of Portsmouth the men of the parts so-called." I say that such a sentence might be written, might pass as a fact, and whether fact or not, would contain an argument so legitimate as to stand against nine hundred and ninety-nine objections out of a thousand. Yet the thousandth might set it aside, since certain facts might have been overlooked.

What if the name of an original Indian tribe had been Jersey (or some name like it), or Portsmouth, or Plymouth? The chances, I admit, are against such an occurrence. But what if it really happened? It cannot be denied that it would materially shake the inference. Nay more, however much that inference took the guise of a tradition or record, it would shake the statement of the author who made it, however unexceptionable.

Still the doctrine might be correct, and not only correct, but capable of having its correctness demonstrated. Let the name in question be the one last mentioned—New Jersey. Let the Old Jersey people of England be like those of Plymouth, but different from them in some definite characteristics. Let those characteristics re-appear in the New Jersey men of America. In such a case, the exceptions taken to the statement from the present existence of an aboriginal Indian population called Nujersi (for such we will suppose the name to be) would fall to the ground.

But what if no ethnological acuteness, no etymological sagacity, no minute analysis of names, traditions, or dialect had ever succeeded in detecting such differentiae, so that, despite of the endeavours of learned antiquarians, the men of New Jersey could not be shewn to differ from those of Plymouth and Portsmouth, whilst all the while the Old Jersey men did so differ. In such a case the objection that was originally taken from the previous name of the Indian tribe would stand valid.

Mutatis mutandis, this applies to Beda's statement concerning the Jutes—the statement being as follows:—"Advenerant autem de tribus Germaniae populis fortioribus, id est Saxonibus, Anglis, Jutis. De Jutarum origine sunt Cantuarii et Vectuarii, hoc est ea gens, quae Vectam tenet insulam, et ea, quae usque hodie in provincia Occidentalium Saxonum Jutarum natio nominatur, posita contra ipsam insulam Vectam. De Saxonibus, id est ea regione, quae nunc antiquorum Saxonum cognominatur, venere Orientales Saxones, Meridiani Saxones, Occidui Saxones. Porro de Anglis, hoc est de illa patria, quae Angulus dicitur et ab eo tempore usque hodie manere desertus inter provincias Jutarum et Saxonum perhibetur, Orientales Angli, Mediterranei Angli, Mercii, tota Nordhumbrorum progenies, id est illarum gentium, quae ad boream Humbri fluminis inhabitant, ceterique Anglorum populi sunt orti."—Beda 1, 15.

Angles, Saxons, and Jutes occurred within comparatively narrow limits in Great Britain, and, within equally narrow limits, Angles, Saxons, and Jutes occurred in Northern Germany and Denmark.

The Angles of England undoubtedly came from Germany; so did the Saxons.

But did the Jutes? Let us look to the different forms their name took; and also to those of that of the Jutes of Jutland; and, when we have seen that occasionally they both took the same, let us ask whether the objection which has just been suggested against the supposed American speculations do not apply to the real English one.

The Jutes of England were called Jutna-cyn, or the Jute-kin; their locality was the Isle of Wight, and from that island they were called Wiht-ware, Vect-ienses or Vecti-colae. Beda himself identifies these two populations, saying that the Vect-uarii (Wiht-ware), "who held the Isle of Wight, were of Jute origin." And, lest this be insufficient, both the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and Alfred repeat (or rather translate) the assertion:—


Of Jotum comon Cantware and Of Jutes came the Kent-people, Wihtware, aet is seo maeiaeth, e nu and the Wiht-people, that is the earde on Wiht, and that cynn on race which now dwells in Wiht, West-Sexum ethe man gyt haet and that tribe amongst the Jutnacynn. West-Saxons which is yet called the Jute tribe.


Comon di of rym folcum a Came they of three folk the strangestan Germaniae; aet of strongest of Germany; that of the Seaxum, and of Angle, and of Saxons, and of Angle, and of the Geatum; of Geatum fruman sindon Geats. Of the Geats originally Cant-waere and Wiht-saetan, aet is are the Kent-people and the seo eod se Wiht at ealond on Wiht-settlers, that is the people eardaeth. which Wiht the Island live on.

Now this name Wiht never came from the Jutes at all; since it existed three hundred years before their supposed advent, as the word Vectis=the Isle of Wight; and was a British, rather than a German, term.

And the Wiht-ware were, partially at least, no Germans but Britons, and as Britons, rather than as Jutlanders, did they stand in contrast with the Saxons of the neighbourhood. The proof of this is in Asser, who says that Alfred's mother "Osburg nominabatur, religiosa nimium faemina, Nobilis ingenio, nobilis et genere; quae erat filia Oslac—qui Oslac Gothus erat natione, ortus enim erat de Gothis et Jutis; de semine scilicit Stuf et Wihtgar—qui accepta potestate Vectis Insulae—paucos Britannos, ejusdem insulae accolas, quos in ea invenire potuerant, in loco qui dicitur Gwitigaraburgh occiderunt, caeteri enim accolae ejusdem insulae ante sunt occisi aut exules aufugerant."—Asserius, De Gestis Alfredi Regis.

So that Gwit-garaburg is now Caris-brook, and Caris-brook in the time of Stuf and Wihtgar, was the last stronghold of the Gwitae, Vitae, Vecticolae or Vectienses, who were simply Britons confounded with Jut-ae.

Who then were the Jutnacyn, who lived in Hampshire, as opposed to those of Carisbrook in the Isle of Wight? I imagine, without pressing the point, or supposing that anything important depends on it, that they were the Exules of Asser, the remnants who escaped from the exterminating swords of Stuf and Wihtgar, in their conquest of the island. That they existed in the time of Beda is true; not however as Danes from Jutland, but as Britons from the land of the Wiht-ware.

I do not profess to say why there was the double form Vit, and Jut—nor should I have identified them myself. It is not I who have done this, but Beda and Alfred; as must be admitted by any one who cannot shew a difference between the Wiht-ware and the Jutna-cyn—both authors deriving each from the Jutes.

Neither can I say how Jutland came to be called Vit-land; I can only say that the change is no assumption. In a document of A.D. 952 we find it so called—Dania Cismarina quam Vitland appellant.—See Zeuss in v.

As stated above, all this falls to the ground if any separate substantive reasons for considering the Wiht-ware to be Jutlanders can be shewn. But such are wanting. If either they or the Jutnacyn of the opposite coast of Hants were Danes in the time of Alfred and Beda, where were the signs of their origin? Not in their language; since no mention is made of the Danish in Beda's list of British tongues. Not in the names of geographical localities. Neither -ware, nor -burgh, (in Gwith -wara -burg) are Danish terms. Where are such signs now? The Danish termination for towns and villages is -by. There is no such ending in either Hampshire or the Isle of Wight.

Did Jutes rather than Angles or any other allied population effect the conquest and occupancy of Kent, as they are said to have done?

It is only the Jute origin of the Jutnacyn or Wihtware of Hants that the preceding reasoning impugns. The Jute origin of the Cantware, or people of Kent, is a separate question.

I only suspect error here: the reasons for doing so being partly of a positive, partly of a negative nature:—

1. As far as traditions are worth anything, they make Hengist a Frisian hero.

2. No name of any Kentish King is Danish.

3. No Danish forms for geographical localities occur in the county.

That the Kentish population has certain peculiarities is highly probable; and it is also probable that similar peculiarities on the part of the population of Hants brought the two within the same category. And hence came the extension of the Jute hypothesis to the Cantware.

Were there Frisians in England?—The presumption is in favour of the affirmative; since the Frisians were eminently the occupiers of the German sea-coast.


1. A native tradition makes Hengist a Frisian.

2. Procopius writes that "three numerous nations occupy Brittia—the Angili, the Phrissones, and the Britons."—B. G., iv. 20.

3. In one of Alfred's engagements against the Danes the vessels are said to have been "shapen neither like the Frisian nor the Danish," and that there were killed in the engagement "Wulfheard the Frisian, and AEbbe the Frisian, and AEthelhere the Frisian—and of all the men, Frisians and English, seventy-two."—Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, A.D. 897.

In Mr. Kemble's "Saxons in England," a fresh instrument of criticism is exhibited. A local name like that of the present town of Kettering is in Anglo-Saxon Cytringas. Here the -as is the sign of the plural number, and the -ing- a sort of Anglo-Saxon patronymic, or, (if this expression be exceptional) a Gentile form. Hence, Cytr-ing-as means the Cytrings, and is the name of a communityi.e., it is a political or social rather than a geographical term.

Now nearly two hundred such terms occur in the Anglo-Saxon Chartas as names of places.

But besides the simple form in -ing (Anglo-Saxon -ing-as) there is a series of compounds in -wic, -ham, -weoreth, -tun, -hurst, &c., as Bill-ing, Billing-ham, Billing-hay, Billing-borough, Billing-ford, Billing-ton, Billing-ley, Billings-gate, Billing-hurst, &c., most of which it is safe to say mean the -hurst, the -town, &c., of the Billings. Now—

1. The distribution of these forms, either simple or compound, over the counties of England is as follows. There are in—

York, 127; Norfolk, 97; Lincolnshire, 76; Sussex, 68; Kent, 60; Suffolk, 56; Essex, 48; Northumberland, 48; Gloucester, 46; Somerset, 45; Northampton, 35; Shropshire, 34; Hants, 33; Oxford, 31; Warwick, 31; Lancashire, 26; Cheshire, 25; Wilts, 25; Devon, 24; Bedford, 22; Berks, 22; Nottingham, 22; Cambridge, 21; Leicester, 19; Durham, 19; Stafford, 19; Surrey, 18; Bucks, 17; Huntingdon, 16; Hereford, 15; Derby, 14; Worcester, 13; Middlesex, 12; Hertford, 10; Cumberland, 6; Rutland, 4; Westmoreland, 2; Cornwall, 2; Monmouth, 0.

In valuing this list the size of the county must be borne in mind. Subject to this qualification, the proportion of the forms in -ing, is a measure of the Germanism of the population. It is at the maximum in Kent and Norfolk, and at the minimum in Cornwall and Monmouth.

2. The simple forms (e.g., Billings) as opposed to the compounds (Billing-hay) bear the following proportions:—

In Essex as 21 to 48 In Northumberl. as 4 to 35 " Kent 25 60 " Nottinghamsh. 3 22 " Middlesex 4 12 " Northamptonsh. 3 48 " Hertford 3 10 " Derbyshire 2 14 " Sussex 24 68 " Dorsetshire 2 21 " Surrey 5 18 " Cambridgeshire 2 21 " Berks 5 22 " Oxfordshire 2 31 " Norfolk 24 96 " Gloucestersh. 2 46 " Suffolk 15 56 " Bucks 1 17 " Hants 3 16 " Leicestershire 1 19 " Hunts 6 33 " Devonshire 1 24 " Lincolnshire 7 76 " Wilts 1 25 " Yorkshire 13 127 " Warwickshire 1 31 " Bedfordshire 4 22 " Shropshire 1 34 " Lancashire 4 26 " Somersetshire 1 34

Now the simple forms Mr. Kemble considers to have been the names of the older and more original settlements with the "further possibility of the settlements distinguished by the addition of -ham, -wic, and so forth, to the original names, having being filial settlements, or, as it were, colonies, from them."—Saxons in England, i. 479.

3. The same names appear in different localities, e.g.:

AEscings in Essex, Somerset, Sussex. Alings " Kent, Dorset, Devon, Lincoln. Ardings " Sussex, Berks, Norths. Arlings " Devon, Gloucester, Sussex. Banings " Herts, Kent, Lincoln, Salop. Beadings " Norfolk, Suffolk, Surrey, Sussex, Isle of Wight, &c.

This leads to the doctrine that either one community was deduced from another, or that both were deduced from a third; this being more especially the case when—

4. The name is found in Germany as well as in Britain. This happens with—

The Walsingas inferred from Walsing-ham, " Harlingas " Harling, " Brentingas " Brenting-by, " Scyldingas " Skelding, " Scylfingas " Shilving-ton " Ardingas " Arding-worth " Heardingas " Harding-ham " Baningas " Banning-ham " Thyringas " Thoring-ton, &c.

If all these names are to be found not only in Germany but in the Angle part of it, the current opinion as to the homogeneous character of the Anglo-Saxon population stands undisturbed. Each, however, is found beyond the Angle area, and so far as this is the case, we have an argument in favour of our early population having been slightly heterogeneous.



[Sidenote: A.D. 787.]

In the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle we find the following notices:—"This year King Beorhtric took to wife Eadburg, King Offa's daughter; and in his days first came three ships of Northmen, out of Haeretha-land. And then the reeve rode to the place, and would have driven them to the king's town, because he knew not who they were; and they there slew him. These were the first ships of Danish-men which sought the land of the English race." Again:—

[Sidenote: A.D. 793.]

"This year dire forewarnings came over the land of the North-humbrians, and miserably terrified the people; these were excessive whirlwinds, and lightnings; and fiery dragons were seen flying in the air. A great famine soon followed these tokens: and a little after that, in the same year, on the 6th of the Ides of January, the ravaging of heathen men lamentably destroyed God's church at Lindisfarn, through rapine and slaughter. And Siega died on the 8th of the Kalends of March."

After this the notices of the formidable Danes become numerous and important. But it is not in the pages of history that the influence of their invasions is to be found. The provincial dialects of the British Isles, the local names in the map of Europe, the traditions and (in some cases) the pedigrees of the older families are the best sources.

If we study the local names of Germany and Scandinavia, we shall find that when we get North of the Eyder a change takes place. In Sleswick the compound names of places begin to end in -gaard, -skov, and -by; in -by most especially, as Oster-by, Wis-by, Gammel-by, Nor-by, &c. In Jutland the forms in -by attain their maximum. They prevail in the islands. They prevail in Sweden. They are rare (a fact of great importance) in Norway. In Germany they are either non-existent or accidental. In respect to its meaning, bytown, village, settlement; and By-enthe town, is a term by which Christiania or Copenhagen—the metropoles of Norway and Denmark—are designated. Such forms as Kir-ton, Nor-ton, and New-ton in German would, in Danish, be Kir-by, Nor-by, New-by.

Now the distribution of the forms in -by over the British Isles has the same import as its distribution in Germany and Scandinavia. It indicates a Danish as opposed to a German occupancy. Again—the Anglo-Saxon forms are Church and Ship, as in Dun-church and Ship-ton; whereas the Danish are Kirk and Skip, as in Orms-kirk and Skip-ton. The distribution of these forms over the British Isles closely coincides with that of the compounds in -by.

With these preliminaries we will follow the lines which are marked out by the occurrence of the places in -by; beginning at a point on the coast of Lincolnshire, about half-way between the entrance to the Wash and the mouth of the Humber; the direction being south and south-west. Ander-by Creek, Willough-by Hills, Mum-by, Or-by, Ir-by, Firs-by, Reves-by, Conings-by, Ewer-by, Asgar-by,[27] Span-by, Dows-by, Duns-by, Hacon-by,[27] Thurl-by, Carl-by[27] take us into Rutlandshire, where we find only Grun-by and Hoo-by. Neither are they numerous in Northamptonshire; Canons' Ash-by, Cates-by, and Bad-by giving us the outline of the South-eastern parts of their area. For Huntingdon, Cambridge, and Beds, nothing ends in -by, whilst the other forms are in sh, and ch—as Charlton, Shelton, Chesterton rather than Carlton, Skelton, Casterton. Leicestershire is full of the form, as may be seen by looking at the parts about Melton, along the valleys of the Wreak and Soar; but as we approach Warwickshire they decrease, and there is none south of Rug-by. More than this, the form changes suddenly, and three miles below the last named town we have Dun-church and Coach-batch. Tradition, too, indicates the existence of an old March or Debateable Land; for south of Rug-by begins the scene of the deeds of Guy Earl of Warwick, the slayer of the Dun Cow. Probably, too, the Bevis of Hampton was a similar[28] North-amp-ton-shire hero, notwithstanding the claim of the town of Southampton.

The line now takes a direction northwards and passes through Bretby (on the Trent) to Derby, Leicestershire being wholly included. And here the frontier of the forest which originally covered the coal-district seems to have been the western limit to the Danish encroachments, Rotherham, Sheffield, and Leeds lying beyond, but with the greater part of Nottinghamshire and a large part of Derby within, it. In Yorkshire the East Riding is Danish, and the North to a great extent; indeed the western feeders of the Ouse seem to have been followed up to their head-waters, and the watershed of England to have been crossed. This gives the numerous -bys in Cumberland and Westmoreland[29]—Kirk-by, Apple-by, &c.

So much for the very irregular and remarkable outline of the area of the forms in -by on its southern and western sides. In the north-east it nearly coincides with the valley of the Tees—nearly but not quite; since, in Durham, we have Ra-by, Sela-by, and Rum-by. The derivatives of castra, on the other hand, are in -ch-; e.g., Ebchester, Chester-le-street, Lanchester (Lan-caster). In Northumberland there are none.

I look upon this as the one large main Danish area of Great Britain, its occupants having been deduced from a series of primary settlements on the Humber. It coincides chiefly with the water-system of the Trent, makes Lincolnshire, and the East Riding of Yorkshire the mother-countries, and suggests the notions that, as compared with the Humber, the rivers of the Wash, and the river Tees were unimportant. The oldest and most thoroughly Danish town was Grimsby. The settlements were generally small. I infer this from the extent to which the names are compounded of -by and a noun in the genitive case singular (Candel-s-by, Grim-s-by, &c.). Danish names such as Thorold, Thurkill, Orme, &c., are eminently common in Lincolnshire; and, at Grimsby, a vestige of the famous Danish hero Havelok is still preserved in Havelok-street. On the other hand, the number of Danish idioms in the provincial dialects is by no means proportionate to the preponderance of the forms in -by. In Lincolnshire it is but small, though larger in Yorkshire and Cumberland.

The extent to which the rivers which fall in the Wash are not characterized by the presence of forms in -by is remarkable. The Witham and Welland alone (and they but partially) have -bys on their banks. Again—

Just above Yarmouth, between the Yare, the North River and the sea, is a remarkable congregation of forms in -by. These are more numerous in this little tract than the rest of Norfolk, Suffolk, and Essex together—Mault-by, Orms-by[30] (doubly Danish), Hemes-by, &c. This may indicate either a settlement direct from Scandinavia, or a secondary settlement from Lincolnshire.

However doubtful this may be, it is safe to attribute the -bys on the West of England, to the Danes of Cumberland and Westmoreland, the Danes of the Valley of the Eden. These spread—

A. Northwards, following either the coast of Galloway or the water-system of the Annan, Locker-bie, &c.—

B. Westwards into the Isle of Man—

C. Southwards into—

a. Cheshire, Lancashire, and Carnarvonshire (Orms-head), always, however, within a moderate distance of the sea—Horn-by, Orms-kirk,[31] Whit-by, Ire-by, Hels-by, &c.—

b. Pembrokeshire; where in Haver-ford and Mil-ford the element ford is equivalent to the Danish Fiord, and the Scotch Firth, and translates the Latin word sinus—not vadum. Guard- in Fish-guard is Danish also; as are Ten-by and Harold-stone.

Such is the distribution of one branch of the Scandinavians, viz.: those from Jutland, the Danish Isles, and (perhaps) the South of Sweden. That of the Norwegians of Norway is different. Shetland, the Orkneys, Caithness, and Sutherland, the Hebrides, and Ireland, form the line of invasion here. In Man the two branches met—the Danish from the east, and the Norwegian from the north and east.

The numerous details respecting the Scandinavians in Britain are to be found in Mr. Worsaae's "Danes and Northmen;" and, besides this, the proof of the distinction just drawn between the Danes of South Britain and the Norwegians of Scotland, the Hebrides and Ireland. It lies in the phenomena connected with the form -by.

a. Common as they are in Denmark and Sweden, they are almost wholly wanting in Norway.

b. Common as are other Scandinavian elements, the forms in -by are almost wholly wanting in Scotland and Ireland.

Hence—Northman or Scandinavian means a Dane in South Britain, a Norwegian in Scotland and Ireland, and a Dane or Norwegian, as the particular case may be, in the Isle of Man, Northumberland, and Durham. This is well shewn, and that for the first time, in the valuable work referred to.

Can this analysis be carried further? Probably it can. Over and above the consideration of the Frisians of Friesland,[32] there is that of the North-Frisians.[33] Some of these may easily have formed part of the Scandinavian invasion. The nearest approach to absolute evidence on this point is to be found in the East Riding of Yorkshire; where in Holdernesse we have the Frisian forms News-om, Holl-ym, Arr-am, and the compound Fris-marsh. The Leicestershire Fris-by is more evidently North-Frisian.

Again, a writer who, like the present, believes that, until a comparatively recent period, South Jutland, the Danish Isles, and the South of Sweden, at least, were Sarmatian, is justified in asking whether members of this stock also may not have helped to swell the Scandinavian host. The presumption is in favour of their having done so; the a posteriori evidence scanty. Two personages of our popular mythology, however, seem Slavonic—Old Bogy and Old Scratch. Bog in Slavonic is God, or Daemon; so that Czerne-bogBlack God, and Biele-bogWhite God; whereas no Gothic interpretation is equally probable.

Old Scratch is the Hairy one, or Pilosus, as his name is rendered in the glosses. In Bohemian we have the forms scret, screti, scretti, skr'et, s'kr'jtek=demon, household god; in Polish, skrzot and skrzitek; in Slovenian, shkratie, shkrately. On the other hand, in the Old High German, the Icelandic, and some of the Low German dialects, the word occurs as it does in English. Still the combination of sounds is so Slavonic, and the name is spread over so great a portion of the Slavonic area, that I look upon it as essentially and originally belonging to that family.

The ethnological analysis of the Scandinavians is one question; the date of their first invasion, another. The statements of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle opened the present chapter. Is there reason to criticize them? For the fact of Danes having wintered in England A.D. 787 they are unexceptionable. For the fact of their having never done so before, they only supply the unsatisfactory assertion of a negative.

For my own part I should not like to deny the presence of Scandinavians in certain parts of Great Britain, even at the very beginning of the Historical period. That this was the case with Orkney and Shetland few, perhaps, are inclined to deny. But the gloss dal[34], combined the exception which can be taken to the words penn fahel,[35] gives a probability to the Scandinavian origin of the Picts which has not hitherto been generally admitted—the present writer, amongst others, having denied it.

When the Britons had occupied the greater part of the Island they were met by the Picts from Scythia. It was not, however, on any part of Great Britain that the Picts first landed.

It was on the north coast of Ireland, then held by Scots. But the Scots had no room for them, so they told them of the opposite island of Britain, and recommended them to take possession of it; which was done accordingly. "And as the Picts had no wives, and had to seek them from the Scots, they were granted on the sole condition, that whenever the succession became doubtful, the female line should be preferred over the male; which is kept up even now amongst the Picts." This peculiarity in the Pict law of succession is interesting; and as Beda speaks to it as a cotemporary witness, it must pass as one of the few definite facts in the Pict history. Another statement of true importance is, that the Scriptures were read in all the languages of Great Britain; there being five in number: the Latin, the Angle, the British, the Scottish, and the Pict.

Could this Pictish have been Scandinavian, a language closely allied to the Anglo-Saxon, without Beda knowing it? I once answered hastily in the negative, but the fact that he actually overlooks the Gothic character of the word dal (=part), has modified my view.

On the other hand, their deduction from Scythia goes for nothing. The text which supplied Beda with his statement has come down to us, though, unfortunately, with three different readings. It is from Gildas, and seems to be one of that author's least happy attempts at fine writing.

He calls the German Ocean the Tithic Valley, or the Valley of Tithys (Thetis?). In one out of the two MSS. which deviate from the form Tithecam Vallem, the reading is Aticam, and in the other Styticam. I give the texts of Gildas in full. They may serve to shew his style:—"Itaque illis ad sua remeantibus, emergunt certatim de curucis, quibus sunt trans Tithecam vallem vecti, quasi in alto Titane incalescente caumate de aridissimis foraminum cavernulis fusci vermiculorum cenei, tetri Scotorum Pictorumque greges, moribus ex parte dissidentes, et una eademque sanguinis fundendi aviditate concordes, furciferosque magis vultus pilis, quam corporum pudenda pudendisque proxima vestibus tegentes, cognitaque condebitorum reversione, et reditus denegatione, solito confidentius, omnem Aquilonalem extremamque terrae partem, pro indigenis muro tenus capessunt."—Historia, Sec.. 15.

But, perhaps, Gildas readily wrote Scythica; for there was a reason, as reasons went in the sixth century, for his doing so. It was, probably, the following lines in Virgil:—

"Aspice et extremis domitum cultoribus orbem, Eoasque domos Arabum, pictosque Gelonos."—G. xi. 115.

That either Gildas or Beda knew of the line or translated it as if the Picts were Geloni cannot be shewn; but that an author not very much later than Beda did so is shewn by the following extract from a Life of St. Vodoal, written about the beginning of the tenth century—"The Blessed Vodoal was (as they say) sprung from the arrow-bearing nation of the Geloni, who are believed to have drawn their origin from Scythia. Concerning whom, the poet writes Pictosque Gelonos; and from that time till now they are called Picts."[36] Sagittiferi is as Virgilian as the word Picti

"Hic Nomadum genus et discinctos Mulciber Afros, Hic Lelegas, Carasque sagittiferosque Gelonos Finxerat."—Aen. viii. 725.

Another element in the reasoning upon the date of the earliest Scandinavians is the fact that more than one enquirer has noticed in the nomenclature of a writer so early as Ptolemy, words with an aspect more or less Scandinavian—e.g., Ar-beia, Leucopi-bi-um, Vand-uarii (Aqui-colae), Lox-ius fluvius (=Salmon River), and, perhaps, some others.

To argue that there were Scandinavians amongst us in the second century, because certain words were Norse, and then to infer the Norse character of the words in question from the presence of Scandinavians is a vicious circle from which we must keep apart. At the same time, the insufficiency of the early historians to give a negative, the oversight of Beda in respect to the word dal, and the exceptions which can be taken to the gloss penn fahel, are all elements of importance. The present writer believes that there were Norsemen in Britain anterior to A.D. 787, and also that those Norsemen may have been the Picts.

The Danish and Norwegian subjects of Canute give us a direct, the Normans of William the Conqueror an indirect, Scandinavian element.

"The latest conquerors of this island were also the bravest and the best. I do not except even the Romans. And, in spite of our sympathies with Harold and Hereward, and our abhorrence of the founder of the New Forest and the desolator of Yorkshire, we must confess the superiority of the Normans to the Anglo-Saxons and Anglo-Danes, whom they met here in 1066, as well as to the degenerate Frank noblesse, and the crushed and servile Romanesque provincials, from whom, in 912, they had wrested the district in the north of Gaul, which still bears the name of Normandy."[37]

This leads us to the analysis of the blood of the Norman, or North-man. Occupant as he is of a country so far south as Normandy, this is his designation; since the Scandinavians who in the eighth, ninth, and tenth centuries ravaged Great Britain, extended themselves along the coasts of the Continent as well. And here they are subject to the same questions as the Scandinavians of Lincolnshire, Scotland, and the Isle of Man. They are liable to being claimed as Norwegians, and liable to be claimed as Danes; they may or they may not have had forerunners; their blood, if Danish rather than Norwegian, may have been Jute or it may have been Frisian; they may have been distinct from certain allied conquerors known under the name of Saxon, or they may be the Saxons of a previous period.

They seem, however, in reality, to have been Norwegians from Norway rather than Danes from Jutland and the Danish Isles; Norwegians, unaccompanied by females, and Norwegians who preserve their separate nationality to a very inconsiderable extent. They formed French alliances, and they adopted the habits and manners of the natives. These were, from first to last, Keltic on the mother's side; but on that of the father, Keltic, Roman, and German. That this latter element was important, is inferred from the names of the Ducal and Royal family: William, Richard, Henry, &c., names as little Scandinavian as they are Roman or Gallic.

Hence, the blood of even the true Norman was heterogeneous; whilst (more than this) the army itself was only partially levied on the soil of Normandy—Bretons, who were nearly pure Kelts, Flemings who were Kelto-Germans, and Walloons who were Kelto-German and Roman, all helped to swell the host of the Conqueror. What these effected at Hastings, and how they appropriated the country, is a matter for the civil rather than the physical historian; the distribution of their blood amongst the present Englishmen being a problem for the herald and genealogist. The elements they brought over were only what we had before—Keltic, Roman, German, and Norse. The manner, however, of their combination differed. There was also a slight variation in the German blood. It was Frank rather than Angle.

* * * * *

Kelts, Romans, Germans, and Scandinavians, then, supply us with the chief elements of our population, elements which are mixed up with each other in numerous degrees of combination; in so many, indeed, that in the case of the last three there is no approach to purity.

However easy it may be, either amongst the Gaels of Connaught, or the Cambro-Britons of North-Wales, to find a typical and genuine Kelt, the German, equally genuine and typical, whom writers love to place in contrast with him, is not to be found within the four seas, the nearest approach being the Frisian of Friesland.

It is important, too, to remember that the mixture that has already taken place still goes on; and as three pure sources of Keltic, without a corresponding spring of Gothic, blood are in full flow, the result is a slow but sure addition of Keltic elements to the so-called Anglo-Saxon stock, elements which are perceptible in Britain, and which are very considerable in America. The Gael or Briton who marries an English wife, transmits, on his own part, a pure Keltic strain, whereas no Englishman can effect a similar infusion of Germanism—his own breed being more or less hybrid.

The previous pages have dealt with the retrospect of English ethnology. The chief questions in the prospect are the one just indicated and the effects of change of area in the case of the Americans.


[27] These are Danish forms throughout—Asgar-, Hacon-, and Carl- being as little Anglo-Saxon as -by. Carl-by in Anglo-Saxon would be Charl-ton.

[28] North-avon-ton-shire.

[29] Also Caster-ton=Chester-ton. The numerous forms in thwaithe are shewn by Mr. Worsaae to be Norse.

[30] Doubly Danish: the Anglo-Saxon form of Orm being Worm.

[31] Doubly Scandinavian: the Anglo-Saxon form would be Worm-church. Generally in compounds of this kind the Danish form Kirk is a prefix, the Anglo-Saxon church an affix; e.g., Kirk-by, Off-church.

[32] See p. 240.

[33] See p. 177, &c.

[34] See p. 226.

[35] See p. 229.

[36] From Mabillon.—Zeuss, p. 198.

[37] The Fifteen Decisive Battles of the World.—By Prof. Creasy,—Hastings.




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Transcriber's Amendments:

p. 9, 'Feroe' amended to Faroe: 'Faroe Isles'.

p. 17, 'milleniums' amended to millenniums.

p. 28, 'milleniums' amended to millenniums.

p. 47, 'Periegeta' amended to Periegetes: 'Dionysius Periegetes'.

p. 48, 'Prosepine' amended to Proserpine: 'Ceres and Proserpine'.

p. 52, 'boats' amended to books: 'different part of Caesar's books'.

p. 61, 'Luxumbourg' amended to Luxembourg.

p. 64, 'potenate' amended to potentate.

p. 67. 'Diviaticus' amended to Divitiacus.

p. 76, 'PEANN FAHEL' amended to PENN FAHEL (in heading).

p. 79, fn. 7, 'Philogical' amended to Philological.

p. 89, 'Oose' amended to Ouse: 'such rivers as ... Ouse'.

p. 92, 'phisopher' amended to philosopher: 'philosopher Seneca'; 'Servius' amended to Severus: 'Emperor Severus'.

p. 95, '-uis' amended to -ius: 'the forms in -ius and -inus'.

p. 98, 'Britains' amended to Britons: 'harass the South Britons'.

p. 107, 'there' amended to their: 'if their dates were'.

p. 124, second entry for 'LXXVII' amended to LXXVIII.

p. 125, 'XCLIV' amended to XCIV.

p. 126, 'CXLIX' amended to CLVI.

p. 149, 'Lunenburg' amended to Luneburg.

p. 153, 'Hevel' amended to Havel: 'river Havel'.

p. 154, 'Verini' amended to Varini: 'Varini of Tacitus'.

p. 167, 'Francs' amended to Franks: 'Merovingian Franks'.

p. 171, '(vita St. Bonifac:)' amended to (vita St. Boniface); 'Ceadmon' amended to Caedmon.

p. 173, 'Dutchy of Holstein' amended to Duchy of Holstein.

p. 184, 'cristened' amended to christened.

p. 193, 'Briton' amended to Britain: 'coasts of Gaul and Britain'.

p. 195, 'Peloponessus' amended to Peloponnesus.

p. 202, additional 'and' removed: 'and and in a form adapted'.

p. 204, 'Nibelungen-Lied' amended to Nibelungenlied.

p. 222, 'Britain' amended to Brittany; 'Britanny' amended to Brittany.

p. 227, added 'a': 'a bad reason for a good one'.

p. 228, duplicate text removed: 'disturb the inference'.

p. 231, 'Hengest' amended to Hengist.

p. 238, 'Britains' amended to Britons: 'as Britons from'.

p. 242, 'Glostershire' amended to Gloucestersh. (in table).

p. 243, 'Gloster' amended to Gloucester.

p. 245, 'Scandanavia' amended to Scandinavia.

p. 246, 'Willoug-by' amended to Willough-by.

p. 254, 'pars' amended to part.

Further Notes:

p. 169, 'Hildubrant' and p. 171, 'Hildebrant': With no clear preference shown by the author, both variant forms remain as printed.


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